Key moments when Truss and Sunak face harassment from Tory members during televised debates

From skeletons in their closets to economic policy clashes as the Bank of England warns of a protracted recession, Liz Truss and Rishi Sunak discussed a range of topics at length during their latest televised debate.

The two Tory leadership candidates took part in Sky News’ “Battle for Number 10” on Thursday night, during which they individually answered questions from party members.

They were both also interviewed by Sky News anchor Kay Burley.

Here are the key points raised during the 90-minute televised event.

– Ms. Truss and Mr. Sunak fell out over their economic policies after the Bank of England warned of a prolonged recession.

The Foreign Secretary insisted a recession was not inevitable when asked about the Bank of England’s outlook for an outright recession and 13 percent inflation.

She told viewers in the studio: “What the Bank of England said today is, of course, extremely worrying, but it is not inevitable. We can change the outcome and make the economy more likely to grow.”

She said she wants to keep taxes low and “do our best to grow the economy by taking advantage of our post-Brexit freedom, freeing up investment, changing things like procurement rules and doing things differently.”

On the other hand, the former chancellor warned that Mrs Truss’s plan would worsen the economic plight by warning of “the suffering of millions”, adding “fuel to the fire”.

He said: “We in the Conservative Party need to act real and fast because the economy indicators are flashing red and the main reason is inflation.

“I’m worried that Liz Truss’ plans will make things worse.”

– Ms. Truss said she “had no skeletons in her closet” and Mr. Sunak insisted that he never benefited financially from tax havens.

Ms Truss insisted she had nothing to hide, telling a Sky News debate: “There are no skeletons in my closet.

“I think everything I’ve ever said and done is known very publicly.”

Meanwhile, the former chancellor was asked if he had ever benefited financially from tax havens, to which he quickly answered no.

When told about Theleme Partners, a venture capital firm he co-founded that was registered in the Cayman Islands, Mr. Sunak said: “Personally, I never received any benefit and paid absolutely normal taxes in full wherever I lived.” .


Rishi Sunak during a special edition of Sky News (Chris Lobina/Sky News)

– Mr Sunak said he wouldn’t back down

Mr. Sunak insisted he would fight “incredibly hard until the last day” of the campaign, telling a Conservative Party member in the audience that “the quick answer is no” when asked if there was a moment when he would step aside. . leadership race.

He said he “fights for what I really believe in and wants to ‘try to convince all of you that I’m right.’

– Ms Truss continued to face questions about her political turn.

One listener told the foreign secretary that her unfulfilled political promise to cut the £8.8bn public sector payroll was “highly offensive” and she was asked to apologize.

Ms. Truss repeated her statement that she decided to withdraw from the political proposal because it was misinterpreted and stopped without apologizing.

Instead, she said: “I don’t think there is anything shameful about publicly saying that this is not working the way I wanted, and therefore I have changed my position on this and I will not continue. It.”


Liz Truss at the Sky News Special (Chris Lobina/Sky News)

“Miss Truss said she would not go to Taiwan as prime minister.

Ms Truss said she would not go to Taiwan if she became prime minister.

Asked by Sky News anchor Kay Burleigh, the foreign secretary replied: “No. We have a long-standing position that the foreign minister, the defense ministry, and the prime minister do not visit Taiwan.”

The Foreign Secretary was also asked if the UK should start arming Taiwan amid tensions with China.

She told a Sky News debate, “We need to make sure democracies like Taiwan are protected. And yesterday, together with my fellow G7 foreign ministers, I issued a statement about the very difficult situation in Taiwan and the concern about the rhetoric we hear from China, the escalatory rhetoric.

“Of course we have a very, very strong export control system in the UK. And we are currently doing licensed exports to Taiwan, exports provided by the private sector.”

– Mr. Sunak dismissed Ben Wallace’s comments that Boris Johnson had to reverse his defense money decision.

Last week, Defense Secretary Ben Wallace accused Mr. Sunak of trying to block defense spending in 2019, but the prime minister overruled his decision.

Mr. Sunak said “this is wrong” when asked about it.

He added, “I’m not going to speak ill of any of my colleagues. But ultimately, I am the chancellor who is responsible for making decisions about how we spend our money. And that’s what I did.”